Can dogs eat papaya? Yes, dogs can eat papaya. Papayas are all-natural sweet treats for dogs packed with antioxidants, beta-carotene, fiber, and other essential nutrients.
Find out what nutritional benefits this tropical fruit can offer dogs and the best way to feed papayas to your pooch.
Health Benefits of Papaya for Dogs
Papaya is composed of essential nutrients that are good for dogs as they are for us. It is high in fiber and papaya enzymes, which aid in digestion and weight loss. These make your furry friend feel full while eating less. They also help in preventing digestive issues such as upset stomach and bloat.
Powerful antioxidants, including beta-carotene and vitamin A, are in papaya. These nutrients help to keep the skin and coat healthy. They also promote good eyesight and prevent vision-related problems.
Above all else, antioxidants enhance a dog’s immune system and make them less susceptible to various health issues, from regular canine influenza to the common cold to cancer, as well as cardiovascular problems like atherosclerosis.
Papaya also contains high concentrations of other vitamins and minerals. It is packed with vitamin C, vitamin E, vitamin K, calcium, folate, magnesium, and potassium. They all work together to improve your dog’s overall health and body development.
The Downsides of Papaya to Dogs
Adding papayas to your dog’s diet will do wonders for his health. However, there are also risks with sharing this superfruit with Fido. The following are the most common health concerns dog owners may face.
The risk of choking, stomach blockage, and toxicity
One papaya fruit has about 115 seeds. Can dogs eat papaya seeds? The answer is a big NO. Papaya seeds can cause many problems. If your dog accidentally swallows them, choking and intestinal blockage may occur.
Another reason for not giving papaya seeds to dogs is that they are potentially toxic. Papaya shares the same characteristic with fruits like apples, wherein their seeds contain small amounts of cyanide. Although ingesting a few seeds may not affect a dog, it is still best to be on the safe side and avoid giving papaya seeds to dogs completely.
If dogs can’t eat papaya seeds, then can dogs eat papaya skin? The answer is still no, for the same reasons. Its toughness makes it a choking hazard, resulting in stomach obstruction. While the skin does not contain cyanide, chemical residue and other harmful substances may stick to it, making it potentially poisonous for your dog.
A possible allergy trigger
Papaya may not be included in the list, but if a dog has developed an allergy to a specific food, there is a high possibility that he may develop an allergy to papaya. Hence, be careful when you feed papaya to your dogs.
If your dog’s first time eating this fruit, serve a few small pieces and observe him for any symptoms of an allergic reaction.
The symptoms often include hives, vomiting, skin rashes, diarrhea, itchiness, non-stop licking, and paw biting. Stop including papaya in your dogs’ diet if they are showing these side effects, and take them to the vet for treatment.
Which Is Better—Fresh Papaya vs. Dehydrated Papaya?
Can dogs eat dried papaya? Dehydrated papaya or dried papaya is high in sugar content. It can raise blood sugar levels at an alarming rate and contribute to the development of diabetes and obesity. Thus, it is not a good option as a dog treat for Fido.
Fresh papaya is a healthy choice for our furry pals. It contains less sugar and is packed with vitamins and minerals. Note that there are two types of fresh papayas in the market—soft papayas and hard papayas.
Always opt for the hard papaya since it is richer in antioxidants. It is better tasting too, as it is sweeter compared to soft papaya, which usually has a bland flavor.
How much papayas can a dog have?
Your dog can eat papaya, but it should be served sparingly and in small amounts. Limit his papaya consumption to no more than three to four cubes twice or thrice a week. If he gorges on the fruit, he will likely end up having digestive problems, including flatulence and diarrhea.
However, discuss your plan of adding papaya to your dog’s diet with your vet first. They will assess if the fruit suits his nutritional requirements. Once you get their approval, be sure to choose organic papayas since they have less chemical exposure. Remove its skin and seeds and chop the flesh into small chunks to avoid choking.
A dog’s digestive system is quite sensitive, and suddenly introducing a new food or abruptly changing his diet can cause digestive problems. For this reason, give your dog papaya in smaller amounts first. This will allow his stomach to get used to the new food and lower the risk of irritating his digestive tract.
Home-made Papaya Dog Treats
Does your dog love eating papaya? He will love it even more when he gets a taste of this homemade papaya dog treat.
- 1 large fresh papaya
- 1 cup of water
- fat-free Greek yogurt
- Cut the papaya in half.
- Remove the seeds using a large spoon.
- Peel the rind.
- Cut into bite-size pieces.
- Place the papaya cubes in the blender.
- Add water and blend until smooth.
- Pour the mixture into molds.
- Freeze overnight or for about six hours.
- Serve to your furry pal.